The cost of child marriage in Kenya is too expensive to disregard.

Why we care: Girls as young as twelve are forced into marriage and lose their childhoods for a life that is defined by isolation, violence and poor health.

How we’re solving this: Mobilizing boys, men and communities to advocate and lobby to end child marriage.

In Kenya, as it is in other parts of the developing world, girls are forced to give up their childhoods because they are forced to marry at a young age. Early marriage thwarts a girl’s chance at education, endangers her health and cuts short her personal growth and development.

Marrying at a young age has lifelong consequences. National indicators on maternal health, education, food security, poverty eradication, HIV/AIDS, and gender equality are all negatively correlated with high child marriage rates at the grassroots.

For the last eight years, the Coexist Initiative has pioneered work around working with men, boys, communities and local organizations towards eliminating it. The Angel Project is a grassroots initiative that is participatory and utilizes the expertise and tools that are respected by the target community to galvanize support. The project endeavors to spur change through a culturally sensitive, human rights-based approach that promotes collective abandonment of the practice with men, boys and communities taking a lead.

This project will reach 4,000 men and boys directly through trainings, group discussions, brochures, fact sheets, banners and a video produced. Approximately 10,000 community members (men, boys, girls and women) will be made aware of the negative impact of child marriage on girls, women, and their partners’ sexuality, and made aware of abuse of human rights.